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Grand Rapids, Mich. (June 8, 2022) –  Mel Trotter Ministries, the largest provider of services to people experiencing homelessness in West Michigan, has completed renovations on its medical space, which includes the Community Partners Medical Clinic, the Sobering Center, mental health services, as well as a dental, vision and chiropractic care.  

The medical services will be provided through a collective partnership involving volunteers from Spectrum Health, Mercy Health St. Mary’s and the University of Michigan Health West, as well as with Michigan State University and Grand Valley State University. 

“I’m extremely grateful to have this unique collaboration between the healthcare providers and universities,” said Dr. Dale McNinch, who serves in a volunteer capacity as Mel Trotter Ministries’ Medical Director. “We were able to make this space happen because of their contributions and their open-minded approach to provide the best care to our guests. It really shows that God can do things we wouldn’t think are otherwise possible.”  

20 years ago Dr. McNinch led a team of community partners to launch, what is now known as, the Sobering Center at Mel Trotter Ministries that redirected individuals who were severely intoxicated or had overdosed from hospital emergency rooms to a more specific care setting. In the last few years, Dr. McNinch has expanded the space to also include medical services, as well as vision, dental and chiropractic care.  

“This is Dr. McNinch’s vision coming to life,” said Dennis Van Kampen, President and CEO of Mel Trotter Ministries. “With this renovation we’ve been able to triple the space of the clinic and add additional services to better serve the guests at Mel Trotter. ”  

A medical professional will also join Mel Trotter Ministries’ outreach team which does well-being checks on individuals living on the street. 

“Many of the individuals we serve haven’t had their eyes checked, seen a dentist or even had a routine check up with a doctor in years,” said Van Kampen. “This new space will help meet our guests’ basic needs – which are not just food and shelter, but also include mental and physical healthcare. This clinic, with the support of great partners, allows us to do that.”  

Providing medical, dental and vision care for its guests is part of Mel Trotter Ministries’ groundbreaking new approach that puts dignity and respect at the forefront of its services, and underscores their mission of demonstrating the compassion of Jesus Christ to all.  

“Dennis and the entire team at Mel Trotter are always looking for ways to improve their services to positively impact the lives of the people they serve,” said Dr. McNinch. “It’s such a blessing to continue to be involved in this wonderful organization.”  

One of the many partners of the Capital Campaign Renovations is the Custer Family of Companies, which has made significant donations including all the labor for Audio and Visual technology upgrades, along with all new flooring and furniture throughout the building.  

“Our family is a large proponent of mental, physical, and emotional health and those basic needs are something that should be afforded to everyone,” said Todd Custer, President & CEO of the Custer Family of Companies.  “The services that Mel Trotter Ministries is able to perform out of this facility are the first steps to help get those they serve to a better position in our community.”  

A $400,000 grant from Network180 helped Mel Trotter Ministries add recovery coaches, and tripled the space for the clinic which includes two physician exam rooms, a medical lab, vision lab, a dental office, as well as a chiropractic room. The adjoining two counseling rooms for mental health services are next to an expanded sobering center with two detox rooms, two private rooms, and space for 6-8 beds.  

Mel Trotter Ministries’ $14.9 MM Capital Campaign kicked off in 2021 to renovate the entire shelter, changing the way services are offered and positioning Mel Trotter as a national leader in the space. The remaining renovations of the capital campaign are expected to be completed in the fall of 2022.

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